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Old 10-18-2009, 11:43 PM   #1
582brew
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Default Did I kill my mead yeast?

I'm sure this is a classic newbie question/mistake. I made my first batches of mead today. I used a packet of wyeast sweet mead and divided it between 2 one gallon batches. I boiled up the water and added the honey after I removed the pots from the heating element, then I let them cool at room temp for about an hour, then got rushed an put them in a cool water bath with some ice until the pots felt cool enough to handle and pour. I poured the first batch and added half the yeast packet. The mead was warm but I hope it wasn't too warm because its been about 6 hours and there is no activity in the airlocks. Am I being impatient? My cider batches seemed to have activity after 2 hours or so. Also, I see that the re-hydration temps for yeast are high, so how can a yeast have a re-hydration temp be around 100 when the temp of the mead has to be around 80 so the yeast aren't killed? I know I didn't have to rehydrate the wyeast, but I was curious anyway. Thanks for any help!

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Old 10-18-2009, 11:52 PM   #2
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You're probably fine. How hot was the must when you pitched the yeast?

Wyeast Sweet Mead is one of those PITA yeasts, so you might end up fine. Either way, panic after 6 hours of no airlock activity is a good 24 hours premature.

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Old 10-19-2009, 12:39 AM   #3
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Yes, you are being impatient.
You didn't kill your yeast and it is way too soon to think there is anything wrong.

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Old 10-19-2009, 12:49 AM   #4
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I feel much better, I've been checking on it every half hour-a watched mead never ferments...Hopefully there will be some activity by tomorrow morning! Thank you!

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Old 10-20-2009, 03:11 AM   #5
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Meads take longer to start, ferment rather slow compared to beers and even ciders.
I'm sure your OK, make sure you have vodka/sanitizer in the air lock, a good seal, and just wait.
Remember brewing beers is measured in days and weeks.
Meads are measured in months and years.
Best of luck.

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Old 10-20-2009, 03:16 AM   #6
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I pour a dry yeast packet right into my carboy from 75º - 90º. I dont rehydrate either. Before I go to bed it is usually in full blown fermentation mode. Buble bubble bubble.

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Old 10-20-2009, 01:44 PM   #7
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Mead is very, very slow. Don't be surprised if it takes a week to start and a year to finish fermenting.

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Old 10-20-2009, 07:02 PM   #8
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did you add yeast energizer? honey lacks nitrogen, which yeast need to be healthy. lack of nitrogen will slow fermentation down.

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Old 10-20-2009, 10:17 PM   #9
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My first batch of mead (blueberry) shows virtually no airlock activity. I can tell when I open it up to punch down the blueberries that it is fermenting, but I only have a 2.5gal batch going in a 6.5gal bucket, so I'm guessing the CO2 is just compressing in the headspace. The airlock is showing a pressure differential, just not enough to bubble. Foamed like mad when I punched it down yesterday though. I'm not worried!

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Old 10-20-2009, 10:54 PM   #10
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It seems like you have too much head space. Do you have something smaller you can rack that into?

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